St. George’s University Small Animal Clinic Obtains AAHA Accreditation

For more than 15 years, the St. George’s University Small Animal Clinic (SAC) has provided quality care for animals throughout Grenada. This month, the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) gave its stamp of approval, accrediting the SAC for two years, making it the second practice outside the United States and Canada to earn the distinction.

small animal clinic

Comprised of 10 clinicians and 15 support staff, the Small Animal Clinic is open year-round and around the clock, welcoming between 5,000 and 7,000 patients for wellness visits, emergencies, and surgeries. In addition, the SAC has been a clinical training venue for more than 1,200 School of Veterinary Medicine (SVM) graduates.

“Accreditation proves that we are practicing a standard of excellence at the Small Animal Clinic,” said Dr. Christina Fernandez, DVM SGU ’07, Immediate Past Director of the SAC and an SVM Associate Professor in Emergency Critical Care. “The AAHA assessed what we’re teaching our students, providing for our clients, and how we work together as a business. On all of these fronts, we showed that we are doing a really good job.”

“AAHA accreditation provides an enhanced and enriched learning environment for students,” added Dr. Tim Ogilvie, Dean, St. George’s University School of Veterinary Medicine. “It is a point of pride for clinicians and staff, and it is a measure of quality and service focus for clients comparable to the best standards of care for animal patients.”

The SAC team began working toward AAHA accreditation in 2015, studying their efficiency of the practice, changing protocols, and updating the facility with state-of-the-art equipment. Earlier this month, an AAHA representative visited Grenada to measure the clinic on more than 900 mandatory and additional standards. The SAC attained accreditation for two years, and will be evaluated for potential three-year re-accreditation in 2018. According to the AAHA, only 12 to 15 percent of all veterinary practices in the US are accredited.

Dr. Wayne Sylvester, a longtime SVM Associate Professor and SAC Clinician, assumed the role of Interim Director, taking over for Dr. Fernandez on July 1.

“At the Small Animal Clinic, we are constantly striving to improve the standard of veterinary practice while optimizing the delivery of our services to our patients, clients and the community,” Dr. Sylvester said. “AAHA accreditation is a monumental accomplishment. It is a clear demonstration of the dedication and professionalism of our team, and we will continue to maintain the highest possible standards.”

For Dr. Fernandez, accreditation is only the latest feather in the clinic’s cap. She has witnessed tremendous improvements at the SAC since arriving at SGU as a student in 2003. “The clinic has changed so much, and the quality of medicine and teaching that the faculty offers is really outstanding at this point,” Dr. Fernandez said.

It has not only provided care and clinical training for SGU students but it has shifted Grenadians’ perspective of pet ownership. “Years ago, pets were considered property – they had a job to do, like to guard property or hunt,” Dr. Fernandez said. “Now we’re seeing more and more Grenadians who are proud of their animals. They bring their pets in for preventive care as opposed to just when they’re sick. They’re part of the family now.”

Published on 10/18/16

SGU Alumnus Raises the Standard for Radiology in Grenada

As part of the St. George’s University 12 Degrees North program, Dr. Randy Becker, MD SGU ’00, has returned to his alma mater each of the past seven years to offer free clinics and radiology training at the General Hospital. This fall, Dr. Becker has taken his commitment one step further with the introduction of the Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS), providing an economical means of storing, archiving, and transmitting digital medical images like X-rays, CT scans, and MRIs.

sgu-alumnus-raises-the-standard-for-radiology-in-grenada

The donation was facilitated by RadNet Comprehensive Radiology Solutions, which provides PACS services for Dr. Becker’s practices in Maryland, and has an estimated value of US $200,000. With the new technology, Dr. Linwald Fleary, MD SGU ‘97, the General Hospital’s only radiologist, can access and assess images from any digital radiology center in Grenada on the PACS system. In addition to this time-saving benefit, and more accurate assessments, radiologists worldwide can join Grenada’s network to offer assistance and even second opinions.

“This is a tremendous milestone for radiology in Grenada,” said Brendon LaGrenade, Interim Vice Provost of Institutional Advancement at SGU. “It is a heartwarming example of what can happen when one person sees beyond a challenge to a possibility, and puts their efforts into making that possibility a reality. Dr. Becker is that special person who saw the need and didn’t let the size of the project stop him. He returned to Grenada in various supportive capacities since shortly after his graduation, and since then has been a central figure in bringing this huge project to fruition in Grenada.”

With SGU’s help, the radiology department at General Hospital had been upgraded to a cutting-edge, digitally equipped facility some years ago. However, the new capability to produce high-quality radiology images created the need to export these images to a radiologist without compromising quality or accuracy.

“Implementing the PACS system was the next necessary step in bringing the standard of radiology in Grenada up to what it needs to be,” said Mr. LaGrenade. “With this new supporting technology, the full effectiveness of the imaging equipment at the General Hospital can be achieved.”

After identifying the need for PACS, Dr. Becker reached out to RadNet. Mr. Ranjan Jayanathan, Chief Information Officer at RadNet, and his team were so touched by Dr. Becker’s work and philanthropy in health care development in Grenada that they agreed to waive all charges other than some hardware, and a fee for system maintenance.
On September 12, Dr. Becker, along with Ralph Stubenrauch, Clinical Applications Manager, and Will Page, Integrations Manager at RadNet, visited Grenada and successfully installed PACS at the General Hospital, University Health Services at SGU, and Princess Alice Hospital, which is currently being upgraded to a digital system. Future plans are to support all digitally capable centers in Grenada who wish to come on board with PACS.

Published on 10/12/16

St. George’s University Alumnus Awarded Full-Tuition Commonwealth Scholarship

Kishon Francis, a 2015 graduate of St. George’s University’s School of Arts and Sciences, has received a full-tuition Commonwealth scholarship to pursue a Master of Science in computer communication networks at Brunel University in London. The scholarship covers all expenses associated with the one-year program, including Mr. Francis’ tuition, accommodation, meals, and general living expenses.

Kishon Francis joined by his sister, Kinda Francis.

Kishon Francis joined by his sister, Kinda Francis.

Mr. Francis obtained a Bachelor of Science in information technology from SGU. He began his studies at Brunel in September, and is one of two Grenadians to receive this academic scholarship this year.

“I feel like I’m on top of the world,” said Mr. Francis. “This scholarship is one of the most difficult Commonwealth scholarships to obtain, and it feels great to be selected from among so many qualified candidates.”

“Not only are Commonwealth scholarships prestigious, but the kind of Commonwealth scholarship Mr. Francis has been awarded is very rare, with a highly competitive application process. This is testimony to the quality of education he received from SGU,” added Mr. Colin Dowe, Assistant Dean of Enrolment Planning at SGU. “We are extremely proud of him. This is a fantastic honor and one worthy of commendation and celebration.”

The Commonwealth scholarship aims to support advancement in developing Commonwealth nations. Recipients not only have shown academic excellence but also the strong potential to create a significant impact in their home countries.

As an assistant lecturer at the T.A. Marryshow Community College, Mr. Francis has always been passionate about sharing with his students more than mere knowledge of the field, going beyond the curriculum to help them convert their knowledge into high performance and success in the workplace. After earning his network-engineering-focused Master of Science, he hopes to pursue a Doctor of Philosophy in software engineering and return to Grenada to fulfill his vision.

“My goal and dream is to use the education I receive to launch a company which will help make technology in Grenada seamless, up-to-date, and on par with international standards,” Mr. Francis said.

Published on 10/6/16

WINDREF Receives $380,000 in Grants to Study Vector-Borne Diseases

The Windward Islands Research and Education Foundation (WINDREF) has received two grants, valued at $380,000, to study the prevalence and impact of the Zika and Chikungunya viruses in Grenada and surrounding countries.

windref

A two-year, $300,000 USD grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) – Fogarty International Center will allow researchers to examine the neurodevelopmental impact of the chikungunya virus (CHIKV) in infants in Grenada. In addition, WINDREF, which is based on the St. George’s University campus, has been granted $80,000 USD by the United States Naval Medical Research Center (NMRC) to study the Zika virus in the Southern Caribbean.

Dr. Randall Waechter, Research Grants Coordinator and faculty member in St. George’s University’s Department of Bioethics, and Dr. Angelle Desiree LaBeaud, Associate Professor at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, will serve as Co-Principal Investigators for the NIH study, which is titled “Neurodevelopment and Vector-borne Diseases: Building Research Capacity in the Tropics.” They will be assisted by SGU faculty members Barbara Landon and Trevor Noel and also work in conjunction with researchers from Stanford University, Oxford University, and Université de La Réunion.

“The recent discovery of the potential impact of the Zika virus on neurodevelopment in utero has researchers all over the world wondering if other vector-borne viruses can also impact neurodevelopment. We have put together a global team of leading experts to address this question. We are very excited to carry out this study, get SGU students involved, and build further research capacity in Grenada”

CHIKV’s spread through the Caribbean beginning in December 2013, including Grenada from August to December 2014, was followed by the recent emergence of the Zika virus in the region, highlighting the need to investigate, predict, contain and respond to vector-borne diseases. Through the NIH study, researchers will determine the prevalence of mother-to-child transmission of CHIKV in Grenadian pregnant mothers, compare the neurodevelopment of children born to infected mothers versus unexposed children, assess the burden of confounding factors to better understand the specific impact of VBD on neurodevelopment, and build local capacity for arboviral and neurodevelopmental testing at SGU.

Past WINDREF research endeavors have been supported by the NIH, including a $50,000 grant through the NIH and the Caribbean Public Health Association (CARPHA) to research the efficacy and awareness of breast and cervical screening in the region earlier this year. However, the CHIKV study marks the first time that the NIH has directly funded a WINDREF research project. It comes on the heels of another neurodevelopmental study, funded by Grand Challenges Canada, for which WINDREF examined the connection between corporal punishment and cognitive outcomes. Through this previous grant, the capacity to examine neurodevelopment in association with CHIKV has already been established.

“In the recent UNESCO Science Report titled: ‘Toward 2030’,  the remarkable increase in research output from Grenada over the last decade – largely as a result of St. George’s University – was acknowledged,” Dr. Waechter said. “Grenada is now the number three producer in the Caribbean of the most internationally respected publications, behind Jamaica and Trinidad. SGU has a promising future as an international research center and we are excited by the opportunities this offers to Grenadians and other CARICOM citizens.”

Titled “Zika virus surveillance in the Southern Caribbean and Reference Lab Support,” the NMRC study will be led by Dr. Calum Macpherson, Director of Research at SGU, Todd Myers from the NMRC, and William Nelson, the President and Chief Executive Officer of Tetracore. Zika dominated headlines around the world in the spring and summer of 2016 and Grenada was among more than 55 countries whose residents were afflicted with the virus.

The study is only the latest partnership between SGU and Tetracore. In July, the Maryland-based biotechnology company donated a Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction thermocycler device to assist with the diagnostics and surveillance for Zika and other vector-borne infections in Grenada. The device can identify multiple genetic markers for Zika and can process six samples simultaneously.

“This collaboration between WINDREF, the Ministry of Health, Grenada, and the US NIDDL and Tetracore provides an essential diagnostic service, using the latest technology for the diagnosis of Zika, Chikungunya, and dengue,” said Dr. Macpherson. “This information is important for many at-risk sectors of the population.”

 

Published on 10/5/16

St. George’s University Celebrates 12th Beyond Spice Family Weekend

Satya and Vijaya Pothamsetti made the trip from Toronto, Canada to attend St. George’s University’s 12th Beyond Spice Family Weekend for two reasons. The first was that they couldn’t wait to attend the School of Medicine’s White Coat Ceremony, as the important event marked their eldest daughter’s entry into the medical profession. The second and more important reason, plainly, was that they missed her.

SGU Students Celebrate Family Weekend

 

To see Monika, the couple traveled to Grenada with their youngest daughter, Harika, and along with hundreds of families from around the world, converged on SGU’s picturesque True Blue campus to experience a taste of culture and hospitality on the Isle of Spice. They visited the Vendor’s Village, a display of local art, craft and food with many unique and handcrafted items; attended a sunset barbecue the next day, and even won third place in Discover the Culture in SGU campus scavenger hunt.

“The campus looks like a huge retreat spot; it’s really amazing,” said Mrs. Pothamsetti. “Any parent that has the opportunity shouldn’t miss Family Weekend and a chance to attend the White Coat Ceremony. This is one of the most significant experiences in the life of a medical student.”

SGU has proven to be a wonderful home for Monika as she begins her medical studies, just as the family has suspected it would be.

“We are extremely proud of Monika,” said Mr. Pothamsetti. “In addition to SGU, she was accepted to three other universities, but we all discussed it as a family and decided that SGU was the perfect fit.”

The Pothamsetti family was joined at Family Weekend by Robert and Mary Hidalgo. When their son, Christopher, was accepted to the School of Medicine, they were both excited and cautious, with the campus being more than 2,000 miles from their New York home.

They arrived two weeks in advance of first term, eager to explore their son’s new campus and adoptive country. “We took all the tours because we just had to come here and experience the island, the culture, and the people,” said Mrs. Hidalgo. “The school itself is phenomenal, and the campus is beautiful. I’m actually a little jealous.”

Now making a second trip to Grenada for Family Weekend, the Hidalgos felt confident in their son’s decision to attend SGU, after learning about it through his grandfather’s doctor, who is also an SGU graduate. “We felt secure and happy leaving him here and absolutely recommend Family Weekend,” Mrs. Hidalgo said. “I would advise all parents to come check it out.”

Since 2008, SGU has invited family members to come visit the country and campus that their students now call home. The bi-annual family weekend festivities included guided campus tours, which gave participants an intimate glimpse into the University, while the historical sightseeing tour of Fort Frederick, the famous Grand Etang Lake and the 30-foot Annandale Waterfalls provided a glimpse into the natural beauty of Grenada. The weekend also featured the Vendors Village, lunch at Belmont Estate, a fully functional and historic plantation; and a sunset barbecue and sea excursion, among other activities.

The weekend also coincided with the White Coat Ceremonies for Term 1 MD and DVM students, allowing families to take advantage of all that Family Weekend has to offer, as well as the chance to witness their loved one’s first steps into the medical or veterinary profession. Students and their families attended a weekend full of activities throughout campus and the island prior to the momentous White Coat Ceremony.

“Every term we happily look forward to opening our doors to host students’ families who’ve traveled from both near and far to experience a weekend of sun, sea and family in the Isle of Spice,” said Colin Dowe, Associate Dean of Enrolment Planning. “The sense of pride and accomplishment with which the parents speak of their children not only brings joy to us but serves as a reminder of the great responsibility we have taken on in assisting these students in realizing their dreams.”

“Family Weekend is a venture that not only benefits SGU but the Grenadian economy as well, since many family members stay at local hotels, purchase handmade items from local vendors, and dine in local restaurants,” added Mr. Dowe. “Our goal is to provide an atmosphere where our visitors can explore all that the University and Grenada have to offer and hopefully become converted into lifelong visitors to our beautiful tri-island state.”

Published on 9/23/16

St. George’s University Links With Pre-Med Program at Erasmus University College in Netherlands

St. George’s University has signed a memorandum of understanding with Erasmus University College (EUC), paving the way for EUC students to receive world-leading medical training. The agreement, the first of its kind between the two institutions, will allow qualified students the opportunity to obtain the Doctor of Medicine degree at SGU.

Photo by Ossip van Duivenbode

Photo by Ossip van Duivenbode

The signing of the MOU between EUC and St. George’s marks an expansion of options to EUC students wishing to pursue medicine at a master level. Currently, EUC pre-med students are able to enroll into a bridging program which links to the Master in Medicine at the Erasmus Medical Centre. The relationship with St. Georges offers an English option abroad for the pre-med students.

“This partnership will provide the opportunity for EUC students to receive some of the best medical training in the world at SGU and our affiliated universities, resulting in more world-class doctors practicing medicine,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, President of St George’s University. “With this historic agreement we have also strengthened our global network of higher education institutions, and formed a lasting partnership with another excellent university.”

Photo by Eric Fecken

Photo by Eric Fecken

Students from EUC who have successfully graduated with a Bachelor of Science in liberal arts and sciences, with a grade point average of at least C for the courses that form part of the Pre-Med major, will be eligible to apply for the program. Those who succeed will be free to choose whether to spend their first year at SGU’s Keith B. Taylor Global Scholars’ Program in Newcastle, and their second year at SGU in Grenada, or to spend both years in Grenada. The final two years of the program will consist of clinical rotations at affiliated hospitals in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

“It is important that our students are given the opportunity to study medicine overseas, which this MOU will facilitate,” Professor Maarten Frens, Dean of Erasmus University College. “Those on the program will receive international training to complement their education from EUC, and I am excited by the prospect of our students having the opportunity to obtain a US or UK medical practitioners license. I am pleased to have overseen the beginning of a new relationship between Erasmus University College and St. George’s University, and hope that this continues for many years to come.”

Erasmus University College is the international honours college of Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) and offers a Liberal Arts and Sciences curriculum. EUC is a residential and small-scale programme located in the heart of Rotterdam. EUR is ranked 71st in the Times Higher Education rankings and is known as a centre of excellence for health, wealth, governance, business, and economics.

Published on 9/15/16

St. George’s University Awards Legacy of Excellence Scholarships to 159 Students Over US$2 Million Awarded to Future Doctors

Today, St. George’s University awarded over $1 million in Legacy of Excellence scholarships to 159 students in the School of Medicine’s incoming class of 2020.

SGU campus aerial

“St. George’s is dedicated to making our unique international medical education accessible to the best and brightest students from all over the world — regardless of circumstance,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, president of St. George’s. “I congratulate these students on a job well done, and look forward to welcoming them in the upcoming academic year.”

Sixty nine students received the Chancellor’s Circle of Legacy of Excellence scholarship this year. The CCLOE is an award to 50 incoming students who meet or exceed an overall undergraduate GPA of 3.7, a science GPA of 3.5, and an MCAT score of 506. The University has awarded CCLOE scholarships since 2009.

“I’m honored that we have such a qualified group of students accepting these awards,” said Dr. Olds.

Ninety additional incoming students received the Legacy of Excellence Scholarship, a partial-tuition scholarship given to students whose academic histories and MCAT scores demonstrate excellent work ethic and a passion for learning. The University began the Legacy of Excellence Scholarship program over ten years ago.

“We created these awards not only to enable these students to attend medical school, but also in the hopes that they will help to fill vacancies in underserved areas that are in serious need of more doctors,” said University Chancellor Charles Modica.. “We at St. George’s are very happy to support them so that they will serve others in the future.”

The University offers a wide variety of institutional scholarships to recognize academic excellence. It has awarded over $100 million dollars in scholarships to more than 5,000 students over the years.

Published on 9/7/16

School of Medicine Class of 2020 Takes Oath at Fall 2016 White Coat Ceremony

The St. George’s University School of Medicine’s Class of 2020 took another step toward their future profession by taking part in the school’s 40th White Coat Ceremony on August 26. The students donned their newly minted white coats, emblems of the authority and professionalism of their chosen field, and collectively recited the Oath of Professional Commitment.

som white coat cereomy august 2016

University President and Chief Executive Officer Dr. G. Richard Olds delivered a touching keynote address, during which he shared anecdotes and lessons from his medical career. In one instance, he learned that a physician must always act in the patient’s best interest, no matter the perception. “When all is said and done, no matter how unpopular, no matter how you might appear, you have to do what is best for your patient,” said Dr. Olds.

For lesson two, he stressed to the students that being a doctor means more than diagnosing illness and recommending treatments. It sometimes means being a friend to your patient who really needs one.

His final lesson was about not letting emotional attachment obstruct recognizing what the patient truly wants. Dr. Olds spoke of a time when he battled to prolong his father’s life in the face of an increasingly complicated medical history. The father, however, wished to be allowed to pass quietly, surrounded by his loved ones.

“There is a tendency to try to do what you think the patient wants, or what you would do in the circumstance, and to forget that you have to listen to the patient and try to do what the patient wants with life,” he said. “The faculty will teach you what you need to know about how the body works, how it goes wrong in disease, how to make a diagnosis, and what is the best way to treat conditions, but it is your patients who will teach you the art of medicine. You have to be open to it, you have to listen to it, and you have to learn from the hard lessons, from the mistakes that you will make in the management of your patients. If you do that, you will all become great physicians.”

The festivities was emceed by Glenn Nanney, MD SGU ’14, a third-year physical medicine and rehabilitation resident at East Carolina University in Greenville, NC. The White Coat Ceremony was first established at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1993 and has since been adopted by most medical schools. This important ritual, which symbolizes a student’s induction into the medical profession, was embraced by St. George’s University’s School of Medicine in 1996.

By Davette St. Louis

Published on 9/1/16

St. George’s University Veterinarians-In-Training Welcomed At Fall 2016 White Coat Ceremony

The School of Veterinary Medicine welcomed its newest class of future veterinarians at St. George’s University’s Fall 2016 White Coat Ceremony on August 27 at Patrick F. Adams Hall. Donning their white coats and reciting the Oath of Professional Commitment, it marked the students’ official entry into the veterinary profession.

svm white coat ceremony august 2016 group of students

Ten years prior, alumnus and Master of Ceremonies Dr. Thomas Monaco, DVM SGU ’09, made such a step himself. He reflected on his journey into veterinary medicine and admitted it would not have been possible without SGU giving him the opportunity to attend veterinary medical school – setting him on the path to becoming a board-certified small animal surgeon at Katonah Bedford Veterinary Center in New York.

“Now you all are in the same position with the same opportunities that I had,” extolled Dr. Monaco. “Be proactive and utilize the talented and dedicated faculty available to you at SGU. While we can all appreciate the luxury of attending veterinary school at a place where most people come for vacation, it is critical that you always remind yourself of the real reason you are here, and that is to become a doctor of veterinary medicine.”

Dr. Monaco stressed balance and time management to the future vets. He encouraged them to become caring and reliable colleagues. “The veterinary community is relatively small and everyone seems to know everyone, whether you are aware of it or not,” he counseled. “As you progress in your career, having a reputation as a great colleague will go a long way.”

Now entering his second year as President and Chief Executive Officer of St. George’s University, Dr. G. Richard Olds was pleased to share in the happy occasion. Having spent most of his career as a physician working closely with veterinarians, he emphasized the link between veterinary medicine, human medicine, nursing, and all the health professions under the banner of One Health, One Medicine.

Dr. Timothy Ogilvie, Dean of SGU’s School of Veterinary Medicine, also offered his advice, drawing from his 42 years in veterinary medicine. He then introduced the ceremony’s keynote speaker, Dr. Sheila Allen, Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Georgia. Dr. Allen has been extensively involved in developing and revising the college’s Doctor of Veterinary Medicine curriculum. Through the use of famous quotes from American cinema and personal reflections of her 35 years of experience in the veterinary profession, she hoped that her heartfelt words would both inspire and resonate with the incoming class.

“How you handle failure builds a whole lot more character than how you celebrate victory,” she advised. “Secondly, don’t compare yourself to others. I promise you your class rank will not be on your diploma or your tombstone. And finally, when you can truly celebrate the achievement of another person as much as your own, or even more so than your own, it is truly liberating.”

St. George’s University School of Veterinary Medicine was first established in August 1999, followed six years later by the installation of the first international chapter of Phi Zeta National Veterinary Honor Society on campus, the Alpha Delta Chapter. In September of 2011, the School’s DVM program was granted full accreditation by the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education (AVMA COE) for seven years. The School of Veterinary Medicine continues to strive toward being a leader in providing veterinary knowledge and technology, while expanding its curriculum and adding new state-of-the-art laboratories and classrooms.

By Ray-Donna Peters

Published on 9/1/16

St. George’s University’s WHO Collaborating Center for Environmental And Occupational Health Re-Designated for Additional Four Years

The World Health Organization has re-designated St. George’s University Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine (DPHPM) as a Collaborating Center on Environmental and Occupational Health through 2020.

Campus aerial

Collaborating centers implement activities in support of WHO’s programs, and are beneficial to both WHO and regional countries; the WHO gains access to top centers worldwide and receives the institution’s support in implementing its global health initiatives. In return, the collaborating centers receive visibility and recognition by national and international authorities. Additionally, the WHO affiliation helps collaborating centers develop partnerships with other collaborating centers, which can help generate resources from funding partners.

This center is directed by Dr. Martin Forde, DPHPM Chair and Track Director for the MPH in Environmental and Occupational Health, as well as DPHPM Demonstrator Odran Nigel Edwards. The Center works in concert with the Grenada Ministry of Health and the Pan American Health Organization’s Caribbean Program Coordinator office in Barbados.

“This prestigious designation will allow us to carry out several key research projects under the auspice of the PAHO/WHO name which, in turn, will further enhance our ability to attract additional funding and research opportunities,” Dr. Forde said. “Over the next four years, we look forward to strengthening and expanding the utility of our Collaborating Center so that it can redound to the benefit of Grenada and other SIDS in the Caribbean region.”

martin forde

The first of its kind in the Caribbean, the WHO CC at St. George’s University was established in August 2012. It remains committed to contributing to WHO’s strategic program in a number of ways, including: to assess and manage occupational safety and health hazards; to collaborate with WHO in developing evidence-based research on emerging environmental and occupational health issues, including climate change; to provide, develop and disseminate curricula, training materials and training for environmental and occupational health capacity building in the Caribbean region; and to contribute towards the implementation of the Global Plan of Action on Workers’ Health and collaborate with other collaborating centers to achieve defined outcomes.

In addition to housing this WHO collaborating center, the DPHPM also houses a Regional Collaborating Center for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Recently, the University welcomed 10 regional conservation leaders to True Blue for a “Caribbean Non-State Actor Dialogue.” Under the guidance of SGU professor Hugh Sealy, lead negotiator for the Alliance of Small Island States and co-facilitator of international discussions of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, the team discussed how to interpret and operationalize elements contained in the COP21 deal in order to assist countries’ efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions and limit temperature increase.

Published on 8/18/16